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Five House controversies from Week 1: Did Republicans break promises?

House Republicans swept back into power this week promising to fix how the institution functions. Speaker John Boehner called for a renewed focus on the Constitution, more openness and accountability, and resolving 'honest differences through a fair debate and vote.' Here’s a look at the Republicans' first week back in charge.

1. The Constitution, gently abridged

YouTube
Members of the House of Representatives read the Constitution Thursday in this screen capture from YouTube.

As a first act of the new Congress, nearly a third of House members, both Republicans and Democrats, joined in the first-ever reading aloud of the Constitution on the floor of the House. But Republicans omitted some passages, such as a formula that counts slaves as three-fifths of a person, a requirement that escaped slaves be returned to their owners, the amendment banning “intoxicating liquors” as well as the one repealing that ban.

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